The Bachelor: Listen To Your Heart: Season 1, episode 3 performance grades

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ABC/John Fleenor
ABC/John Fleenor /

The theme of this week’s episode of The Bachelor: Listen To Your Heart was simple – listen to your heart and your off-key pitch. This episode went from 0 to 100 and I could not be more pleased.

Well, these Listen to Your Heart performance reviews can no longer be in jest, as we’ve entered the big leagues. There is a TOUR DE FALSETTO on the line here, people. Chris Harrison casually dropped in to alert the contestants that they’ve transported to Week 6 of Bachelor in Paradise and must commit to the Sonny to their Cher immediately. Not only that, but the franchise realized there’s no actual point to this show at current, so they decided to throw in a curveball and award the winners the tour and record deal Jed thought “engagement” translated into.

With their hearts and last college-try at a singing career on the line, the contestants took these performances to a new level. With that, here’s my educated opinion on the duo that stands to give Kasey Kahl a run for his money.

Note: Now that the couples are a two-for-one deal and will ultimately be judged as one, my Listen to Your Heart performance reviews will accordingly follow this format from here on out. I will also be implementing a trivial numerical overall rating, as several breakout performances transpired, but there’s always someone who stands at the top.

ABC/John Fleenor
ABC/John Fleenor /

Rudi Gutierrez & Matt Ranaudo, “Fallin’ All in You” – Shawn Mendes

Vocal Performance: A

Okay, Rudi is an actual STAR. Rudi is officially my dark horse sleeper pick. Her range is considerably more vast than most of the contestants; not only that, but her voice has soul and depth, and doesn’t sound like the everyday week two boot on American Idol. Her lower vibrato notes are the first to not physically pain my ears in irritation, and her ceiling is ultimately huge. Rudi rightfully took the lead in this performance; importantly, Matt aptly sidestepped and allowed Rudi to shine. It was a good approach, both for the song and my view on the male species.

Some voices sound great on their own, but simply don’t mesh together. Rudi and Matt are not one of those duos. They harmonize quite well together and it was frankly pleasant to listen to, a first for me in Listen to Your Heart. This would not have been the case had Matt attempted a divvying of the spotlight.

Interpretive Routine: A-

Again, I defer my commentary to Rudi. Granted Matt was playing the guitar and doesn’t appear to give off Backstreet Boy vibes. I officially felt vindicated in the inclusion of this category thanks to the easing of the stiffness that previously looked like the plank from Ed, Edd n Eddy was performing on this show. While Rudi wasn’t throwing any kickball changes, she for once took advantage of the stage provided and moved with the beat. It wasn’t anything Tony award-worthy, but they looked to be actually enjoying themselves, another first.

~Romance~ Level: A

Matt and Rudi have come along way since Rudi flung Xerox copies of her Matt Burn Book down the mansion steps. The romance between these two was actually highlighted best by Matt’s clear retreat from the spotlight to let Rudi shine. Especially on a show where let’s be real here, the concept was literally conceived from the reigning champion of #WrongReasons, alternatively known as Jed. So for Matt to happily let Rudi steal the show says, quite frankly, a lot about his feelings for her. They also had a comfort level that looked like they’d been doing this for years. Four for you, Glen Cocos.

Overall Grade: 93/100